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SD: Henry's vs. TJs for wine selection

kudru Dec 11, 2007 01:44 PM

TJs inevitably seems cheaper... but is it worth going to Henry's because they have better/more interesting/less run-of-the-mill wines? Any opinions?

  1. Alice Q Dec 11, 2007 10:28 PM

    I think Trader Joes generally beats Henry's for selection, but both can vary from store to store. Henry's might be cheaper overall, but I think the wines tend to be lower quality.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Alice Q
      kudru Dec 12, 2007 06:51 AM

      cathy + alice q- thanks for your input! incidentally, i really enjoy reading both of your blogs. keep it up!

    2. c
      Cathy Dec 11, 2007 06:31 PM

      But, back to you, Original Poster Person...

      I have bee on a quest for only wines not listing Sulfites (even though they are naturally occurring) and have found basically only(and not all) organic wines have no sulfites listed on the labels and Henry's sells all organic wines on one shelf, whereas Trader Joe's sells wines by country or varietal and usually the label on the shelf states if it is organic or not...making it more of a challenge to find organic wines.

      As far as more interesting, that is a toss up. As far as price range, that too is a toss up, but I think TJs has a few better deals on certain wines, because a lot are one time only purchases.

      I enjoy looking at both stores.

      1. l
        littlestevie Dec 11, 2007 02:04 PM

        Actually I would go to San Diego Wine Company down on Miramar Rd. They have lots of wines at different price pts. The clerks know their stuff as well. The only problem is the parking is lousy. they are right next door to a Boll Weevil. However, if I had to pick between the two, I would pick TJ. Up in Encinitas, their wine selection seems much better than the local Henry's and yes I know that the store on Encinitas Blvd. is one of their smaller stores, so the wine selection may suffer.

        15 Replies
        1. re: littlestevie
          kudru Dec 11, 2007 02:06 PM

          unfortunately, I'm carless and confined to PB (where there are face-to-face H's and TJs)

          Next time I'm on Miramar Rd, though... good to know

          1. re: kudru
            trentyzan Dec 11, 2007 02:16 PM

            I don't go to those locations, but if my only convenient choices were those - I'd frequent TJ's. I get vioignier and prosecco at my local TJ's, plus very affordable cooking wines if you're on a budget. The TJ vintage ale made by Unibroue is good, too. And their Chimay prices are not bad.

            1. re: trentyzan
              kudru Dec 11, 2007 02:19 PM

              looking for a good red wine <$ 15 to bring to dinner.... i'll check out the Viognier

              1. re: trentyzan
                kudru Dec 11, 2007 02:21 PM

                whoops, that's a white isn't it! (ha, I know nothing about wine)

                1. re: kudru
                  trentyzan Dec 11, 2007 02:33 PM

                  You might poke around http://www.traderjoesfan.com/magazine/
                  for ideas, it depends a lot on what's for dinner and what diners like...

                  1. re: kudru
                    DoctorQuality Dec 11, 2007 02:35 PM

                    if you're looking for a red, the peachy canyon zinfindel and the robert hall cabernet sauvignon from TJ's are great and both around 10 bucks

                    1. re: DoctorQuality
                      menuinprogress Dec 11, 2007 03:09 PM

                      I second the Robert Hall. Solid cab for the price.

                    2. re: kudru
                      kudru Dec 11, 2007 03:15 PM

                      fantastic, thanks to you all!!!

                  2. re: kudru
                    trentyzan Dec 11, 2007 02:18 PM

                    I've found Calvados at some TJ's locations as well, which is nice this time of year.

                    1. re: trentyzan
                      treb Dec 11, 2007 03:47 PM

                      I think TJ's gets the edge, it's a large national chain with buying power. For a real find Costco has a 2005 cab named ROOT1 from Chilie, wine spectator rated 90 and it's under $10. a bottle. Great drinking!

                    2. re: kudru
                      Cathy Dec 11, 2007 04:13 PM

                      San Diego Wine Co. is actually on Eastgate Mall Road, which crosses Miramar Road. GO North on it and it is one of thosae office-looking buildings, closer to the bridge over 805 than to Miramar.

                      1. re: Cathy
                        stevuchan Dec 11, 2007 05:16 PM

                        The moved to Miramar Rd. months ago. Used to be just down the street from my office, but alas they have moved. I was just there today (gulp).


                        1. re: stevuchan
                          Cathy Dec 11, 2007 05:51 PM


                          I work *very* close also, but have been driving over 805 to and from and have not passed by since at least June...there was an incident on Miramar Road in June and I just started taking the 52 to 5 to and 5 to 52 home...

                          Obviously...and I am on their mailing list-get the flyer every month and-obviously have not opened it.

                          1. re: Cathy
                            Josh Dec 12, 2007 07:01 AM

                            Yes, they have moved. They're not the same since Paris' departure as buyer, however. He was a real knowledgeable guy.

                            1. re: Josh
                              ibstatguy Dec 12, 2007 08:03 AM

                              They buy wine from Paris now, including champagnes from the Theise book and that's a good thing. The influence that came from Rich's time there was helpful as well and they now buy wines from his book at Epic, another good thing.

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